Baby cuscus, one of the winners from 2015

Baby cuscus, one of the winners from 2015

The Greens have announced the Animals in the Wild photographic competition is relaunching for 2016, with entries opening on 2 May 2016 and encouraging people to shoot with a camera not a gun.

The competition is part of the Greens campaign against recreational hunting, and in particular the Sporting Shooters Association arms fair ‘Huntfest’ which has been held in Narooma over the June long weekend since 2013.

In 2015 the Animals in the Wild competition received almost 300 entries from across the country.

Despite Huntfest being originally approved as a photographic exhibition, its licence has been amended to allow its operation as a fully-fledged arms fair. The Greens have called on the Minister for Crown Lands to refuse consent to Huntfest’s licence extension after 2017 and listen to the overwhelming views of the Eurobodalla community.

Greens Eurobodalla Shire Councillor Gabi Harding said:

“Our community have overwhelmingly responded against the sale of guns and ammunition in our public building in Narooma. We have made representation time and time again at council forum, through emails and letters to Councillors and the General Manager. Through petitions and through the media.

“This extension of the licence past the term of the next Council is completely undemocratic.

“Our current Council knows this will be an election issue come September 2016 and to lock in the licence for a further 5 years during the fading months of the current term can only be described as outrageous,” Clr Harding said.

Greens MP Justice and Firearms Spokesperson David Shoebridge said:

“The Greens are excited to be relaunching Animals in the Wild for 2016 which is a much loved celebration of nature in the wild, unthreatened, and unharmed by humans.

“As Huntfest gets becomes bigger and uglier every year, Animals in the Wild is an important way of demonstrating that shooting nature and animals is far more rewarding with a camera than a gun.

“The fact is that the overwhelming majority of residents in the Eurobodalla community do not support Huntfest and do not want their coastal town known as the home of an arms fair.

“The Greens are calling on the Minister to listen to the overwhelming views of the local community and refuse the request to extend Huntfest’s license past 2017.” Mr Shoebridge said.

The prize of a $100 gift voucher will be awarded to the best picture in each of the following categories:

  1. The image that most evokes a connection with an animal in the wild in Australia
  2. The most beautiful image of a bird in the wild in Australia
  3. The image that conveys the threats facing native animals in Australia, including the reality of environmental and habitat damage, hunting, and guns and killing culture in Australia
  4. The most beautiful image of an animal in the wild photographed by a photographer aged 16 years or under.

For more information head to the Animals in the Wild website.